As the Indus River System Authority (Irsa) is expected to close canals as part of the annual maintenance exercise from the last week of next month, the Ministry of Water and Power has prepared a comprehensive plan to run expensive closed units of public sector generation plants (Gecos) besides Independent Power Plants (IPPs). Presently, load shedding hours have been reduced to three hours from six hours in urban areas and six hours from 10 hours in rural areas for the last couple of weeks on the instructions of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.
“We have prepared a plan to deal with the situation during December 2017 and January when canals will be closed for annual maintenance due to which hydel generation declines massively,” the sources added. A spokesman for Irsa said on Tuesday that the Punjab government has submitted its annual canal closure plan according to which canals will be closed from December 26, 2016 to January 30, 2017.
However, Sindh has not submitted its canal closure plan to the water regulator so far. It is expected that Sindh canal closure plan will commence from December 26, 2016. With the canal closure, 1500-2000 MW of hydel generation would be out from the generation cycle to be replaced with generation from thermal sources. Presently, the share of hydel generation is around 32 per cent of total generation.
Sources in Water and Power Ministry said that Pakistan State Oil (PSO) has already been requested to ensure furnace oil supply to Gencos, Hubco and Kapco. However, PSO has accused the Ministry of Water and Power of not paying the agreed amount against furnace oil supply and Late Payment Surcharge (LPS) as well as supporting a review of the furnace oil consumption for thermal power plants due to lower demand. PSO claims that it firmed up its import plan and is maintaining uninterrupted supplies to the power sector customers in line with demand.
A summary of dispatches along with stocks/days cover, presently available fuel oil with PSO reveals that PSO supplied 160000 tons of furnace oil against a demand of 159000 tons, Kapco received 58000 tons against a demand of 68000 tons, Thermal Power Station (TPS) Muzaffargarh received 1944000 tons against a demand of 170,000 tons and TPS Jamshoro received 50,000 tons against a demand of 25000 tons. However, Combined Cycle Power Plant (CCPP) Nandipur has not
been supplied furnace oil despite a demand of 57000 tons as the plant was not operative. The sources said, as per the directives of Joint Secretary Water and Power (NTDC) in order to match the daily supply rate of 16,000 tons for October 2016, supplies were enhanced to TPS Muzaffargarh and TPS Jamshoro. This resulted in a considerable increase in stocks of both plants.
Kapco is the only Genco where there is sufficient ullage to meet the demand of November 2016. PSO has also requested Ministry of Water and Power to review the enhanced projected daily target from December 2016 to June 2017 @ 20,000 tons per day (minimum 18,000 tons) in view of variation in consumption demand pattern.
Source: Business Recorder